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Local governments in Florida can, and sometimes do, legislate what employers can and can’t do within their jurisdictions. For example, since the Florida Civil Rights Act contains no protections against discrimination based on sexual preference, some local governments have adopted ordinances to address the issue:

Orlando: All organizations with six or more employees must comply with the city’s anti-discrimination ordinance. It prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation as well as race, national origin, religion, gender, disability and age.

Miami/Dade County: The county’s human rights ordinance protects gays and lesbians from discrimination in employment, housing, credit and accommodations. Courts have ruled, however, that the ordinance doesn’t grant them the right to sue; aggrieved employees may seek only injunctive relief.

Living-wage laws

Additionally, several municipalities have living-wage laws that mandate higher hourly pay than the state’s minimum wage (currently $6.67 per hour):

Palm Beach County: Contractors working on county construction contracts worth more than $100,000 must pay their workers $9.73 per hour if they offer health benefits, or $10.04 hourly if they don’t provide health coverage.

Broward County: County employees and contractors providing food preparation, security, maintenance, clerical work, transportation, landscaping, printing or reproduction services must earn $9.57 per hour if they have health benefits, and $10.82 per hour if they don’t.

Miami Beach: The city and contractors with contracts worth more than $100,000 must pay their employees at least $8.56 per hour if they offer health coverage, or $9.81 hourly if they don’t provide health benefits.

Miami/Dade County: County employees, contractors working on contracts in excess of $100,000 and the airport’s ground service personnel must earn $9.81 per hour with health coverage, or $11.82 hourly if they don’t receive health benefits. 

Orlando: Workers employed by the city or its contractors must earn $8.50 per hour and receive health benefits. Covered employers that don’t provide health benefits must pay them 20 percent more than the hourly wage.

Excerpted from Florida’s 9 Most Critical Employment Laws, a special bonus report available to subscribers of HR Specialist: Florida Employment Law.

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